Improving Health Care Systems: Accountable Care Organizations

NCQA helps groups of providers work together to improve quality and lower costs. One way we do this by accrediting Accountable Care Organizations. ACOs coordinate doctors, hospitals and other providers to make sure you get all the care you need and avoid waste.

Accountable Care Organizations (ACO) promise to deliver better quality care at lower costs. The ACO idea is simple: ACOs coordinate doctors, hospitals and other providers to make sure people get all the care they need. At the same time, they work to cut waste that raises costs and can lead to errors. 

NCQA Accreditation sets a high bar for ACOs – we want our accredited ACOS to deliver on the promise of providing quality care at lower cost. 

We specifically evaluate whether the ACO:

  • Ensures access to the care you need.
  • Has the ability to manage and coordinate your care.
  • Has systems to monitor and improve quality and efficiency.
  • Has tools that help you and your providers identify the best care.
  • Protects your rights, including privacy, and has a solid foundation of patient-centered primary care.
  • Includes patients in oversight.
  • Has proper contracting and payment arrangements.

Learn more about NCQA's ACO Accreditation Program.

Download ACO Fact Sheet

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